The Richland Players are rehearsing a powerful drama called These Shining Lives, to open on April 29.

The play by Melanie Marnich tells the story of the women of the Radium Dial Company of Ottawa, Illinois, in the 1920s and 30s. Many of the women who made watches with radium dials became ill from radiation, and they challenged the company.

The play revolves around Catherine Donohue, her family and three of her friends working in the factory — characters based on real people. The women’s strength shines through as the story weaves through the highs and lows of their struggle. Their courage paved the way for future workers to hold companies accountable for employee safety.

This moving tale is directed by Christy Valle and produced by Albania Schneegans Davis. Historical artifacts related to the production will be on display at the Richland Public Library from April 1 through April 29.

Shows will be at 7:30 p.m. on April 29 and 30, and May 6, 7, 13 and 14. Matinee performances will be at 2 p.m. on May 1, 8 and 15. Tickets can be purchased online at, at the Richland Players box office, or by calling (509) 943-1991. For more information, send email to